Computed Tomography Coronary Angiography (CTCA)
A CT scan using dye to highlight any blockages in your coronary arteries, including those caused by a build-up of soft plaque which may not show up in other tests.
What is CTCA?
A CT coronary angiogram or CTCA is a quick and painless scan used to evaluate the condition of your coronary arteries. This test is more advanced than a CAC Score that only detects a global build-up of calcium. A CTCA includes all the information of a CAC score but also identifies the degree of narrowing of the arteries caused by calcified or non-calcified plaque which are the known cause of heart attacks. Your doctor may recommend a CTCA to assist with early detection of heart disease, especially if you are experiencing symptoms such as chest pain, breathlessness, excessive sweating, irregular heartbeat, or dizziness.
What should I expect?
How should I prepare?
Do not take any stimulants such as tea, coffee, soft drinks or energy drinks for 12 hours before your test
Do not eat anything in the 2 hours before your scan
Drink plenty of water to ensure you stay hydrated
Do not wear lotions, perfumes or powders around the chest area, and remove any jewellery around your neck or chest
Wear an outfit on the day to enable you to easily change into a gown from the waist up, such as a shirt or blouse
You should consult your doctor prior to the test as they can advise if you should cease any of your regular medications during the test that may interfere with the results
What happens next?
After the test you will be monitored for 15 to 30 minutes and the cannula removed before you can go home. The results will be reviewed by a specialist cardiologist and a full report will be sent to your referring doctor who will be able to advise you if a follow-up course of action is required.
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